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At-Home Diagnostics

<< 2015 Projects

At-Home Multi-Disease Diagnostic Device via Vacuum Assisted Nasopharyngeal Mucus Collection


Need: A method to create an affordable, non-invasive, and easily interpretable at-home test that can accurately diagnose four common respiratory diseases (Influenza A, Influenza B, Adenovirus, and RBV), in order to reduce unnecessary visits to the doctors office and the burden these visits impose on the healthcare system.

 

Abstract

Approximately 10% of visits with a general practitioner are classified as unnecessary meaning that they do not result in a specialist referral or a prescribed treatment plan. This waste in resources amounts to an overwhelming $5.2 billion annually in the US alone.

We seek to create an affordable, non-invasive, and easily interpretable at-home test that can accurately diagnose four common respiratory diseases (Influenza A, Influenza B, Adenovirus and RSV) in order to reduce unnecessary clinical visits. We are targeting viral infections diagnosable through nasopharyngeal mucous samples and implementing a battery operated nasal aspirator to ease the specimen collection and testing for such diseases.

After a positive diagnosis for one of these diseases, our goal is to recommend at-home treatments and guide the patient through the process via informational directives. For sake of project scope, we have only developed a preliminary version of these directives. For individuals feeling ill, but testing negative for these diseases, it is recommended that medical attention be obtained in order to receive a more thorough diagnosis and treatment-plan as there are many serious illnesses that present themselves like these four viral infections would. As a result of our diagnostic device and information database, patients who have serious illnesses will have a protocol that can direct them to their physicians.  Those with less serious conditions or untreatable viral infections for which symptom relieving remedies exist, can avoid unnecessary physician consultations reducing the burden these non-essential visits.

(Left to right) Jackson Barrett, Abram Tapia, and Beulah Dadala worked on an at-home diagnostic test for common respiratory diseases. They prototyped a simple and effective nasal mucosal aspirator capable of performing rapid lateral flow tests for disease diagnosis.

Click here to see the group's poster.